he magic word is Appenzell. This small, car-free village sits at the center of Switzerland’s smallest canton: Appenzell. In fact, it’s a double canton: Catholic Appenzell Innerrhoden and Protestant Appenzell Ausserrhoden. Nowhere else in Switzerland is the transition from hilly mittelland to the rocky, towering alpine world more striking than here. You have rolling hills covered with green meadows populated by fat cows that give the milk for the famous Appenzeller Cheese and seemingly out of nowhere, soaring, snow-covered mountains up to nearly 10,000 feet. A paradise in summer and winter, Appenzell itself fascinates because it so closely reflects what you might perceive as the essence of the most traditional Switzerland: cheese, cows, cowbell, colorful houses, and beautiful costumes closely connected with centuries-old traditions that the locals stick to this day. For an overview of this very special Swiss region’s history and culture, visit the Museum Appenzell in the Town Hall.
The Middle Ages have left their mark on Appenzell, and you find this part of Swiss history in many details as you walk along, which is one of the greatest pleasures in the village. Appenzell fought its fair share of wars of independence during the Middle Ages, and you’ll see monuments and other reminders, like the Memorial of The Battle of Stoss Pass in 1405.
Other things to do while in Appenzell include listening to dulcimer music, learning all about yodeling, and watching how traditional leather goods inlaid with metal ornaments are made.
The nearest airport is Altenrhein/St, Gallen but it’s not an international airport. Better and far bigger are Zurich, which is only 40 miles away, or Basel. Both run frequent buses and trains to Appenzell
Best things to do in Schwende Switzerland
Schwende is the largest district in the canton and includes the parts of the village of Appenzell to the southwest of the Sitter. Also the scattered settlement area extending further south, parts of Weissbad and Wasserauen as well as most of the Alpstein up to the summit of the Säntis.The cable car brings you comfortably to the Ebenalp, which is the starting point for leisurely but also demanding hikes. A little below the Ebenalp are the prehistoric caves of the Wildkirchli which is one of the Best things to do in Schwende. Paragliders and hang gliders will find ideal conditions on the Ebenalp.
With an area of around 5700 hectares, the Schwende district is the largest district in the canton of Appenzell I.Rh .. The district area extends from the Säntis Mountains to Schwende, Weissbad, along the left bank of the Sitter to the village of Appenzell and from there along the right bank of the Chlosbach the high moor, Wasserschaffen and Scheidegg, Kronberg to the Säntisspitze. It thus includes most of the Alpstein (689 ha) and also the forest area (1670 ha) of the canton AI.